Chocolate-Malt Cake

Each month when I get my new issue of Bon Appetit in the mail, I get rather excited. It always comes safely tucked away in plastic wrap and tearing it open, exposing the pages within is not unlike christmas morning.

I’m pretty sure that on average I spend more time each day on the computer than not on the computer. So keep that in mind when I say that I prefer reading the magazine in my hands for a subscription fee instead of on my screen for free. The glossy pictures, the small joy in each new page turned, I’m hooked. To a food magazine.

Usually, after perusing the entire issue, I have a couple recipes that I have mentally marked as intriguing that I go back to and decide which one of them makes the cut (if I made every single recipe I found interesting, I would have no time for my day job.) Occasionally, however, I come across a recipe that makes me stop in my tracks, my hands refusing to flip to the next page. I am suddenly overcome with a desire to create what I see on the pages in front of me, before I even finish the issue.

This is one of those recipes. The Chocolate-Malt Cake by Christina Tosi.

I’d like to say they had me at “Chocolate-Malt”…

Bittersweet Chocolate

Or “bittersweet chocolate”…

But no. They had me at “toasted marshmallow”

Note though that it wasn’t just “marshmallow” alone. The “toasted” part is important. Very important.

 Does the Chocolate-Malt Cake have you yet? It should. It really should. If it doesn’t, you’ll be thinking about it later. You’ll see.

Chocolate-Malt Cake

Recipe by Christina Tosi via September 2010 issue of Bon Appetit

Milk Crumbs

  • 3/4 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Chocolate-Malt Crumbs

  • 2/3 cup Milk Crumbs (above)
  • 6 tablespoons Ovaltine Chocolate Malt Mix
  • 1 1/2 ounces high-quality white chocolate (such as Lindt or Perugina), chopped

Malt-Fudge Sauce

  • 1 1/3 cups Ovaltine Chocolate Malt Mix
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (70% to 72% cacao), chopped
  • 1 teaspoon mild-flavored (light) molasses
  • Pinch of coarse kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup sugar


  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate (70% to 72% cacao), chopped
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons Ovaltine Classic Malt Mix
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows


  1. Milk Crumbs: Preheat oven to 275°F. Line large rimmed baking sheet with parchment. Combine milk powder, flour, sugar, cornstarch, and coarse salt in medium bowl; toss to mix evenly. Add butter; stir with fork until clusters form. Spread mixture evenly on prepared sheet. Bake until crumbs are dry and crumbly but still pale, about 10 minutes. Cool Milk Crumbs completely on sheet. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 week ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature.
  2. Chocolate-Malt Crumbs: Mix Milk Crumbs and Ovaltine in small bowl. Place white chocolate in small microwave-safe bowl. Heat in microwave in 15-second intervals just until melted, stirring occasionally. Drizzle chocolate over Milk Crumb mixture; toss to coat.
  3. Malt-Fudge Sauce: Place first 4 ingredients in medium bowl; set aside. Combine cream, corn syrup, and sugar in heavy medium saucepan. Bring to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Pour cream mixture over chocolate mixture in bowl. Let stand 1 minute, then stir until smooth. Whisk until sauce is glossy, about 1 minute. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 week ahead. Cool completely. Cover and chill. Rewarm just until pourable before using.
  4. Cake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat three 8-inch cake pans with nonstick spray. Line bottom of each pan with parchment round; coat parchment with nonstick spray.
  5. Place chocolate in small microwave-safe bowl. Melt in microwave in 15-second intervals just until melted, stirring occasionally. Set aside. Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and coarse salt into medium bowl. Combine butter, sugar, and corn syrup in large bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment; beat on medium-high speed until fluffy and pale, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs; beat on low speed to incorporate, then increase speed to medium-high and beat until mixture is fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add melted chocolate. Beat until blended, about 1 minute. Add buttermilk, oil, and vanilla; beat on medium-high speed until pale brown, about 2 minutes. Add dry ingredients; beat on low speed just until blended, about 45 seconds. Divide batter among pans; smooth tops.
  6. Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Cool completely in pans on racks.
  7. Assembly: Stir milk and Ovaltine in small bowl. Invert 1 cake from pan onto flat plate or tart pan bottom; peel off parchment. Place cake, top side down, in 8-inch springform pan. Brush cake with generous 2 1/2 tablespoons Ovaltine-milk mixture. Let Ovaltine-milk mixture soak into cake. Drizzle 1/3 cup malt-fudge sauce over cake; spread evenly over top. Sprinkle 1/2 cup chocolate-malt crumbs over sauce. Drizzle 1/3 cup malt-fudge sauce over crumbs. Scatter 1 cup mini marshmallows over. Using kitchen torch, toast marshmallows. Repeat with second cake layer, Ovaltine-milk mixture, malt-fudge sauce, chocolate-malt crumbs, malt-fudge sauce, and marshmallows. Remove third cake from pan; peel off parchment. Place cake, top side down, atop marshmallows on second cake layer. Brush with remaining Ovaltine-milk mixture (assembled cake will rise well above edge of pan). Cover cake with plastic wrap; chill overnight. Cover and chill fudge sauce.
  8. Run thin knife around sides of pan to release cake. Remove pan sides. Place cake (still on springform pan bottom) on plate. Rewarm sauce just until pourable. Pour over top of cake, allowing sauce to drip over edges. Mound handful of marshmallows in center of cake. Using kitchen torch, toast marshmallows. Sprinkle remaining malt crumbs over cake. Let cake stand at room temperature 3 hours before serving.

9 thoughts on “Chocolate-Malt Cake

  1. Oh, this looks totally decadent. Perfect. I’m really wishing I had a big slice and a cold glass of milk sitting by me right now. : )

  2. Pingback: Blueberry and Cream Cookies « Amandeleine

  3. Meredith – Thanks so much! Your blog looks great, both the photographs and the blog design!

    Teresa – The site and photos won’t load? So what is happening exactly? How did you manage to comment? I would love to help you out with this issue! I’m sorry my site is acting buggy for you.

    oneordinaryday – Thanks, I had mine with a big old cup of coffee, but milk would also have been a fantastic choice!

    Dixie – There’s a lot of steps but I had so much fun making it! I’m sure you will too! :)

  4. Pingback: Claire Robinson, Ice Cream & Bacon « Amandeleine

    • Sorry, this is totally a delayed, way too late response. :( What did you end up doing for your kid? To be completely honest, this cake is amazing, but I’ve encountered other cakes that are less work and equally awesome. If you or your kid specifically loves malt flavour and marshmallows then I say go for it. If you think they’d be just as happy with a standard chocolate cake, I might just go that route!

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